Building Permits

Do I need a building permit?

A building permit is required in the City of Williams Lake anytime work to be undertaken is regulated by the BC Building Code.  This includes:

  • Construction of a new building
  • Alterations or additions to an existing building
  • Structural changes to a building
  • Installation of a mobile home or other factory constructed building
  • Moving or demolishing a building or part of same
  • Changing the use of a building
  • Accessory Dwelling Unit
  • Secondary Suite
  • Installation of foundation damp proofing and drain tile
  • Installation of or alterations to a plumbing or fire sprinkler system
  • Any change to a floor plan of a commercial/public building
  • Creation of new spaces within a building (e.g.: finishing a basement or building a partition wall to turn one room into two)
  • Construction of a carport or garage either attached to a residence or detached
  • Construction of sheds, gazebos, pergolas, etc. if the building is 10 square metres or larger
  • Construction of a retaining wall that retains 1.2 metres of material at its highest point
  • Construction of a deck if the deck is covered or the walking surface is 600mm above final grade at any point
  • Replacement or upgrades to insulation
  • Replacement of windows
  • Installation of chimneys or wood-burning appliances
  • Installation of security shutters

*This list is not comprehensive but serves as an example.  Please contact City Hall at (250) 392-1765 to enquire about the need for a building permit BEFORE starting your project.

Do I need a building permit for a shed?

Building permits are required for sheds that will be 10 square metres or larger, including pre-built sheds purchased from hardware stores.  

Please note that metal shipping containers are not permitted on residential properties.

When is a building permit not required?

  • Re-roofing an existing building provided no structural repairs are required
  • Re-siding a single or two-family residential dwelling
  • Normal plumbing repairs and fixture replacement in single-family dwellings
  • New flooring within a dwelling
  • Construction of a fence

*Even if your project does not need a building permit, you must still comply with the Zoning Bylaw regulations.